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“Spectacular La Specola: A Must Have Experience”
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9 reviews
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Overview
Holiday Rental House -
3 Bedrooms, 4 Bathrooms, Sleeps 6
Anguillara Sabazia, Province of Rome, Lazio

Reviews from our community

Excellent - based on 9 reviews
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Reviews from our community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
ariadneco...
Louisville
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Spectacular La Specola: A Must Have Experience”
Reviewed 9 April 2017 for a stay in April 2017

We must admit that when we arrived we were a little unsure of what we had gotten ourselves into. The poor taxi driver had pulled up in front of the police station in the pouring rain and said "this is your hotel". We laugh now at how confused we must have looked to him. We called PeLe and within two minutes she came rushing down the hill to our rescue, umbrella in hand. Her English and her character are impeccable. She escorted us to the villa and we found it to be everything the photos showed. But much more than that it instantly felt like home. The views from every room were spectacular.
The villa itself was immaculate as you might expect from a high end hotel but it also managed to keep the charm and feel conducive to the medieval town.
We loved everything about La Specola and the town itself. The weather was wonderful every day but the day we arrived.
We experienced many types of people living there. Th first being the locals, many of whom have been there for generations, and keep to themselves but were nonetheless friendly. Wonderful to walk through their streets and alleys paved with cobblestones worn smooth by centuries of foot traffic, and to see the laundry hung out on washing lines.
The second type were our favorites, the expatriates, from all over the world. Wonderful, educated, artists and musicians, who discovered this tiny magical utopia hidden in the a crevasse of a busy technological world, and who just couldn't bring themselves to leave. Then their are the people like ourselves who stumbled across this timeless haven and bought a villa as a second home. We looked at several for sale but none could outshine La Specola.
The fourth type were those professionals who could afford to live there away from the hustle and bustle and commute to Rome. Finally there were the tourists. Primarily from Rome just 45 minutes away. There were a plethora of restaurants and cafes which were wonderful. Spectacular food and local which was unbelievably affordable. There are no English translations or pictures in the menus. Nor do the servers have much or any English. We know no Italian. Yet we had the most uniquely cosmopolitan experience and plan to return again this fall and to La Specola.
When we flew in from the USA and we had planned to visit Rome too. That didn't happen this trip. We just couldn't get enough of this little town. We have no children and didn't see very many when we were there. zThis may or may not impact some families.
The only thing we suggest is to know that there are a couple of additional fees at La Specola that you'll not be aware of at the time you book. A 150 euro cleaning fee in cash when you arrive. You won't argue with that when you see just how spotless and luxurious the villa is. If you check out early before 8:00 am a 20 euro fee for early arrival of the cleaner and final inspection. That's fair, it would cost more than that to get me up and at it that early. Overall you will get exceptional value for your money.
Last but not least, the most wonderful part of our week was meeting and befriending PeLe. She is truly a treasure. You can't take her home, she won't leave, we've tried as I'm sure many others have too. She is so helpful and open hearted and genuinely strives to make your stay as pleasant as possible.
So, for us we have to give La Specola 10/10 and the
town 9.5/10. We hope you have as wonderful an experience as we did!

Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
soulsjs
Beaconsfield
Level 5 Contributor
53 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Beautiful apartment”
Reviewed 25 June 2016 for a stay in June 2016

Everything about our stay at La Specola was brilliant; Paolo was very gracious and accommodating during the booking progress and Pele was so helpful in Anguillara. She arranged a taxi to meet us at the airport and to take us back on the last day and she met us in the resort and gave us good local knowledge. The apartment is even better than the photos. It is very large and even though we were 5, we did not get in each other's way. The beds were comfortable and it's a real boon to have each room with an en-suite. The terrace is as wonderful as others have reported - a real joy to just sit out there and read and look out over the lake. We spent the first few days just chilling!
Anguillara is beautiful; we did visit Bracciano by boat and were glad we had not stayed there, although it was worth a visit. I would definitely recommend a boat trip but be aware that in June the boats only operate at weekends and on holidays.
We also visited the aviation museum at Vigna di Valle, which was fascinating. We walked there and got a taxi back for 25 euros.
Rome is easy to get to by train and metro. You need change for the machines at the metro - 1.50 euros per journey. The shuttle bus to the station is very convenient and only costs a euro. You pay on the bus.
Restaurants - La Nepitella - we ate there 3 times and each occasion was wonderful. Right by the lake. Sunsets are indescribable. Very reasonable price, great food and lovely owner.
Chalet del Lago - very good food, well presented and excellent position. A bit more expensive but worth it. House wine very reasonable at 10 euros. Service a bit iffy but probably because they were still training wait staff.
Da Brontolo - disappointing
Ristorante Harvey - stick to their pizzas, they're great.
Writing about this just makes me want to be back there again. 8 days was not enough! We'll be back.

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Travelling group: Extended Family
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
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rrgc2016
Leicester, United Kingdom
1 review
“A very nice spacious apartment as described.”
Reviewed 12 June 2016 for a stay in May 2016

Very nice spacious apartment with good amenities and short walk from lake. 24/7 supermarket about half a mile away is very handy. Car parking is a couple of hundred yards from the apartment and spaces can be limited. Free parking is normally only for 2 hours and paid space is 24 hours for 8 euros. We were informed that parking fines are rarely issued but got a 28 euro one, but as we'd been using the same spot for 4 days it wasn't a bad rate!

Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SarahKell...
Hood River, Oregon
1 review
“LaSpecola is a gem!”
Reviewed 22 September 2015 for a stay in September 2015

The listing accurately describes the home in both words and pictures. Situated in the heart of the ancient city of Anguillara Sebazia on Lake Bracciano, this home has an old world charm which begins as you approach by foot on the cobblestone streets. We came here to relax with relatives after a business trip and we were completely enchanted by our stay here. We found it to be the perfect combination of a centuries' old home which was well-appointed for the modern traveller. The house was clean and had everything we needed for our stay, the beds and sitting area were comfortable, views of the lake from the patio were stunning, and it was a lovely point to set out from as we explored the town and surrounding countryside. Paolo was very responsive and extremely helpful in arranging our stay, especially as we booked at quite short notice. He arranged for someone to meet us at the parking area and walk us to the home when we arrived, and he supplied us with great information not only about the house, but about the town and area as well. We felt like welcome guests in his home and, if the chance should arrive, we would love to stay again in the future!

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Travelling group: Extended Family
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Recommended for:
Friends getaway Families with young children
  • Was the property as advertised?
  • Would you recommend the location of this property?
  • Was it a good value for the price paid?
  • Did the property offer wi-fi/internet access?
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William P
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“5 star gem !”
Reviewed 7 August 2015 for a stay in June 2014

The amazing photos of La Specola immediately grabbed my attention when we were searching for a home to rent for 3 weeks in the Bracciano area. But in reality, the house is even more fantastic than the photos suggest. So much space, with beautiful antique furniture, but yet it still manages to remain a cosy and very comfortable house. First and foremost Paolo is an absolute gentleman. He helped us in many ways, from his great guide book of the local area and to restaurants etc, and also with recommendations for when we left the area and travelled a bit. He was always available if we had any questions and he made us feel extremely welcome in his family home. Paolo met us and helped us carry in our luggage (and there was lots!), and the extra welcoming touches - fresh flowers on the dining table, and a bottle of wine in the fridge were very welcomed by us. The house has a great big terrace that gets amazing sun set views over Lake Bracciano - they have to be seen to be believed ! There are a number of nice retaurants in Anguillara and the sorrounding area, but what we really enjoyed was the peace and quiet of the house and the area. All the local villagers and neighbours are so friendly , it was really like stepping back in time! The village itself is beautiful and we loved spending our days on the local beach on the lake. We had an infant with us so the calm waters of the lake were a great way to introduce him to swimming for the first time. It was great having 3 ensuite bedrooms - and again I have to mention the views. From every window it is like a different landscape portrait. La Specola truly is a 5* home , and Paolo is most definitely a 5* host. I will definitely be recommending La Specola to my friends and family for a holiday with a difference! Thank you !

How easy was it to book the property? How helpful were the directions to the property?
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Bedding & mattresses Kitchen & utensils
Bathroom cleanliness Other facilities & amenities
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Travelling group: Extended Family
Your age range 25-34
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Recommended for:
Friends getaway Families with young children
Large groups
  • Was the property as advertised?
  • Would you recommend the location of this property?
  • Was it a good value for the price paid?
  • Did the property offer wi-fi/internet access?
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Skydreame...
Laparade, France
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Paradise Found”
Reviewed 19 March 2015 for a stay in March 2015

Occasionally in life you find something special. La Specola was exactly that in every way. We were struck by the friendliness of the people as soon as we arrived in the beautiful, medieval village of Anguillara Sabazia. We were met and welcomed by the lovely House Manager, who escorted us up the ancient village centre and took is into this beautiful place. The apartment was superb. It is a much loved home of the family and it was truly a privilege to stay there. The flat was spacious, comfortable with the most incredible views of the lake from most windows. It was furnished with the antique furniture of the family but with all the modern comforts of today. Everything was there we could possibly wish for and more. It was private, peaceful and a true haven. There were three very comfortable bedrooms, each with an en suite bath or shower room. The living room was absolutely huge and very beautiful. Spotlessly clean everywhere. Outside a pretty shady garden to the front and a terrace to the back with the most superb views! The medieval village was stunning, with character and ambiance. But still well provided with excellent local shops, many cafes, bars and excellent restaurants. Spoiled for choice! It was a taste of real Italy and we felt totally at home there and loved every minute of our stay. We also received very comprehensive information in advance from Paolo which was greatly appreciated and very useful. One of the highlights for us was the lovely House Manager, PeLe who is charming! She looked after us very well and couldn't have been more helpful. We have been back less than a day and can't wait to return. Thank you!

How easy was it to book the property? How helpful were the directions to the property?
How easy was key pickup/access to the property? Overall condition of the property
Bedding & mattresses Kitchen & utensils
Bathroom cleanliness Other facilities & amenities
Service
Liked best: Everything
Travelling group: Other
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Recommended for:
Friends getaway Older travelers
Families with young children
  • Was the property as advertised?
  • Would you recommend the location of this property?
  • Was it a good value for the price paid?
  • Did the property offer wi-fi/internet access?
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joakim_13
Helsinki, Finland
Level 2 Contributor
2 reviews
“Great view over the lake from this splendid & charismatic apartment”
Reviewed 2 March 2015 for a stay in February 2015

We had a great experience. The historic house and apartment is beautiful, just as depicted in the profile. The atmosphere of the house was pleasant and relaxing.The town is lovely, but very quiet in the winter. The owner has everything set up very nicely and the house manager was very accommodating when ever we needed help. The communication with the owner was seamless, as well. We will definitely consider coming back!

Travelling group: Extended Family
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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